After landing, I had initially planned to head to the office for a few hours to get some work done, but it was absolutely pouring outside and the Private Room was beckoning. Had a rather long walk from my gate today to the lounges, but once inside and after showing my boarding pass, one of the agents insisted on escorting me to the Private Room.
What I’ve personally always loved about Singapore is they manage to deliver perfect service without ever coming across as “hovering” over you or being at all pretentious. It’s the perfect combination of letting you know you’re a valued customer, but giving you the space and amenities to enjoy your time with them how you please. This was my first visit to the Private Room and it was nice to be walked to my seat, asked what I want (Coke Light, still water, and a cold towel please) and then left alone for a couple of hours to get some work done on the laptop.
It was about 2pm by this point, and I was starting to get hungry, so I wandered over to the dining room to check out some lunch. I had the entire place to myself. In the entire lounge at this point it was just me and one other couple. View from my table:
Panoramic of the Private Lounge dining room. I can’t imagine people eat from the small buffet often.
Glass of bubbly and some delicious mixed satay to start. The peanut sauce was fantastic. I would quite literally come back to the Private Room just for another helping of this!
Main course of lobster and asparagus. Skipped the potatoes – don’t want to fill up on empty starches!
Ice cream? I really shouldn’t..you insist? Fine, for research purposes, of course…
At this point, it had stopped raining outside, so I decided to walk off the calories and head into the city for a bit as I had almost nine hours left before my connecting flight. Here’s the one thing I didn’t like about the Private Room – nowhere to store luggage. I asked…and then I asked even more nicely, but was sent away to the main terminal left luggage. Got there, and of course the T3 left luggage was closed today. Seems they alternate every day, and today only the T1 terminal left luggage was in service. Seriously?
Took the tram over to T1, found left luggage where a very friendly gentleman patiently weighed my bags and took my money, and then I was able to head through immigration. Just going to the city for three or four hours? Apparently that’s not suspicious at all in Singapore, passport was stamped and I was on my way. Quick train ride into the city, and a great walk through Bugis and and the Downtown Core. I resisted stopping for an overpriced touristy Singapore Sling, and was content to just wander and have some Starbucks. (Again, research purposes of course.)
On my way back to the train I ran into a special Valentines Day outdoor concert where people were having an Adele lip synch contest. It was all at once the most culturally fascinating and disturbing thing I think I’ve ever seen! Made it back to the airport around 7pm and had a quick walk through the terminals before heading back to T1 to retrieve my bags. Tried for 20 minutes to get a good shot of a butterfly in the butterfly garden, but no luck, so finally settled for a picture of people taking a picture of butterflies:
Back to the Private Room, showed, my boarding pass, and as it was a new shift the desk agent wanted to walk me back to the Private Room. I told her I knew the way and could show myself since I was returning from earlier in the day, and she was happy to let me go. Again, service offered, declined, and no “are you REALLY sure?” Perfect service. The real kicker was when I got back to the Private Room desk, the agent greeted me by name – despite the shift change. I had to ask her. “My colleague from earlier today told me you would be coming back and what you looked like, so I’ve been expecting you.” Now THAT is service.
Couple more hours of work, and it was time for some dinner. I had heard the couple earlier in the day mentioning that the Thai mango salad was delicious, and they were absolutely right!
The satay was so good earlier, and I didn’t want a huge meal, so I ordered it again. Unfortunately, it wasn’t mixed this time – so wasn’t quite as good, but still excellent.
Back to my seat to do a little more work, and immediately the attendant was over suggesting I should have more champagne. Well, if you insist…
“You’re not having desert? I can’t convince you? How about some chocolate ice cream?” Well, how can I resist that. “Maybe some red wine with that?” I swear, these people are enablers…
With that, my lovely day in the Private Room was over, and it was time for the short 10 minute walk to the gate.
Singapore Airlines Flight 231
Singapore (SIN) to Sydney, Australia (SYD)
Depart 00:45, Arrive 11:40, Flight Time: 7:55
Airbus A380-800, Registration 9V-SKD, Manufactured 2008, Suite 3F
Miles Flown Year-to-Date: 16,319
Lifetime Miles Flown: 2,380,720
Upon boarding, I was met at the door with “Good Evening Mr. Jason, we’ve been expecting you.” I asked how they knew my name – was I the only one in Suites tonight? “There is one other, but they have an Asian name.” Again, impressive personalized service.
It was noted that I ordered Book the Cook, but “you may like to look at the menu regardless”
The suite from above:
Yeah, this is a horrible way to fly.
Looking across the plane at the empty suites:
If this suite is a’rockin…don’t come a’knockin!
Tasty macadamia nuts and cashews with a glass of Krug.
Very shortly after take off my Boston Lobster Thermadore was delivered. From research online, the difference between the Boston and the classic seemed to be that the Boston is the full lobster, and indeed it was:
Clearly, it was awful:
I would post more about the time I enjoyed in suites, but, well, right after eating I fell asleep and was out for fix straight hours, landing just 30 minutes out of Sydney. The crew seemed very disappointed I wasn’t up for any breakfast, but was happy to make me some tea when I asked.
Overall, it was a fantastic experience, and now I have to find an excuse to fly Suites on a much longer daytime route to enjoy all the service (and hopefully get some caviar!) With that, a couple of outstanding flights in Singapore First were behind me, and it was time to enjoy a couple of days in Australia!